5 True Stories as Illustrated By Ernest Hemingway Quotes

Happy Birthday Hemingway! Thank you for never failing to depress me when I needed it most, and, of course, for the pages and pages of reminders that it could, in fact, always be worse. In honor of your birthday, here are 5 times you really summed up my life in a nutshell.

Brian was my first boyfriend. We met in an entirely unromantic way, but I fell for him harder than at Jennifer Lawrence at the Oscars. We said I love you about 3 weeks in, and I was thinking about rings before I turned 21. This is exactly what love is supposed to feel like! I thought to myself. He made me want to write poetry and sing and do all of the ridiculous things people do when they are in love. Then, a few months later I found out he was a jealous crazy with serious interpersonal problems and a need to control my every move.

I tried to make it work, but in the end, I just had to sum it up in the words of Hemingway:

The first draft of everything is shit.

First night of newfound freedom

First night of newfound freedom

That it is, Hemingway. That it is. 

So the night before my 22nd birthday, I was drunk (read, hammered) at Woody’s. I had a 2pm flight to Italy the next day, and I was terrified. So, what did almost-22 –year-old-me do? It went out and found the most attractive guy at the bar and went swimming with it. I sobered up the second the water hit my toes, but at that point, I was committed. Now, I swim in daylight.

In the words of Hemingway:

Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.


Such a good sport about the whole “need to go swimming” thing

That it does, Hemingway. That it does.

On one of our first Acro Yoga class, I thought the teacher must be insane: he wanted me to jump into some sort of shoulder stand on Ryan’s feet! My mind started racing: I’m too heavy – he can’t hold me! I’m going to fall! He’s going to let me face plant into the ground if I try this! It was awful. I was so frustrated by my own insecurities and I thought I hated it. Then, one day, we met a new friend who showed us (with such confidence it was impossible not to believe him) how attainable the poses were, as long as you trusted your partner. We nailed that pose (and many others) after I realized that Ryan was just not going to let me fall (and if he did, he’d make it as graceful as possible). Me not sure if I could trust him, and not trusting him by default, didn’t do anything but spur more distrust. Now, it’s pretty unquestionable.

After all, in the words of Hemingway:

The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.


Balancing on feet

That was deep, Ernie. That was real deep.

I lived with a roommate-zilla for 2 years. She wasn’t all bad, except the fact she didn’t leave the couch except to pee or make a snack, and the fact that she was mean to my dog, and the fact that she tried to break up my now-ex-boyfriend and I from the second we started dating (okay – maybe I should have let her do that). Anyway, she’d always try to have these “roomie outings” and I’d go, mainly because not going always equaled more conflict (and I truly love my other roommate), but there was only one way I could really deal with that.

In the words of Hemingway:

An intelligent man is sometimes forced to be drunk to spend time with his fools.


Large bottle of wine = fun

Preach it, Hemingway. Preach it.

Somewhere in between Portugal and Spain, I sprained my ankle. I was carrying a Jansport and a yoga mat, when I tripped over one of those cursed cobblestones and felt a snap that shot pain from my toes to my knee. I was 4 miles away from the hostel, and I felt panic spreading through my body like poison. My mind rushed with drama and I was started worrying about what would happen next. After about ten minutes hobbling along, I was absolutely exhausted. The worrying was physically draining my already tired body, and wasn’t helping at all. I started singing show tunes from Wicked, anything to distract my mind from freaking out. At the very least, my brain could think of something other than the “what if’s.” Those never help.

In the words of Hemingway: 

If something is wrong, fix it if you can. But train yourself not to worry. Worry never fixes anything.


Smiling > Worrying

It’s like you just get me, Hemingway.

But, because we are being honest here, you have to admit when someone just gets it really wrong…I’m talking of course, about my personal favorite quote (the one that lived on my college graduation cap):

Write drunk. Edit sober.

I think Crissy Van Meter really sums this one up what happens if you try this.

Can’t nail them all the time, right Ern?

Happy Birthday Hemingway!



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